A biograpy of the woman who ruled "behind the veil" for decades.
Years ago I read Anchee Min's novels about Cixi, Empress Orchid and The Last Empress, and absolutely adored them. So I felt it was high time for me to read a proper biography.
Jung Chang is the acclaimed author of Wild Swans, but she's been heavily criticized for the controversial arguments in this book. Cixi is traditionally seen as an evil empress whose pride was the cause of many lost battles. Yet Chang sees her as a revolutionary ruler.
As I'm far from being an expert in Chinese history, it is difficult for me to have an opinion about the issue, but after a bit of research on the internet, I realized Chang is not the only researcher who seems to defend her. So are the arguments as controversial as some claim? Not sure.